SINCE the advent of DJing software such as Traktor and Serato, it seems that any chancer with a laptop and a set of headphones can attempt to impress girls at a party by dropping in the fact that they spin on the ones and twos every other weekend; (I know this for a fact, as I am one of these people). However, this flooding of the market means that it’s difficult for the proverbial cream to rise to the top, with a bevy of hacks drowning out the sounds of true professionals on the London music scene. So, for a talented DJ duo who want their music to be heard above the cacophonous racket that saturates many of the city’s clubs, what’s the answer? Well, a tour of America is never a bad starting point.
It seems that any chancer with a laptop and a set of headphones can attempt to impress girls at a party by dropping in the fact that they spin on the ones and twos every other weekend; (I know this for a fact, as I am one of these people)...
Fresh off a US tour, Danny Ashenden and Jamie Paterson (known collectively as The C90s) have headed straight back into the studio to finish off a set of remixes and original tracks that they are going to unleash upon our ears over the next couple of months, with the goal of making their first full length album starting to come into view. London Confidential swung by the studio for a quick chat with Danny, who takes time out in between mixes to tell us why he’s anti-MySpace, how to get through technical issues on stage and why he won’t be doing a Bowie and living in Berlin any time soon…
Hi Danny, thanks for meeting us. Are you still jet-lagged?
I’ve had a few weeks to recover now, but it was pretty crazy. We were meant to do something like twelve dates in eleven days, but thankfully one of them got cancelled…otherwise I’m not sure we would have made it back alive.
So, is life on tour as crazy and glamourous as we all imagine it to be?
There’s certainly an element of glamour; after show parties are always fun…but all I can remember now is airport after airport, restaurant after restaurant then playing the gigs.
Tough life. So, tell us a little about The C90s and how you have come to be international recording artists?
We formed around 2007 and started DJing together all around London; after a while we started writing and producing our own songs and building up a fan base as The C90s (which is our homage to the cassette tapes that we grew up listening to). We still play a lot of shows around the city, but we also travel around Europe as that’s where most of our fans live.
Really? That sounds interesting, which cities?
Well, Berlin is a favourite; there’s a great scene there for electro music, although they really take their music so seriously over there. The clubs run for days and nights without stopping and it’s full of DJs playing deep tech house…when a couple of boys from London rock up and start playing disco tracks, well, sometimes we need a quick exit.
That sounds hilarious! Being chased by down the street by angry techno fans, laptops in hand…
Yeah, we’ve managed to escape that scenario so far, but I think it’s safe to say that we won’t be doing a ‘Berlin’ period for any extended amount of time in the near future. However, the weirdest gig that we ever played (or tried to, at least) was in Russia. We got booked to play a bunker and when we got there, the promoter wasn’t prepared so we just hung around for a few days before flying home, about a grand lighter and a lot colder than when we left…so strange.
It sounds like you’re better off sticking in London. So, when people try to classify your music, do you like the tag ‘new disco’?
Well, I don’t really like any genre tags; I think that it’s a lazy way for people to group vaguely similar music together without actually listening to the roots of the music…however, I do think that it makes it easier for the fans to search for music that they like if their favourite bands and DJs are in the same section in, say, iTunes.
So they’ll be no ‘new disco/funky electro/etc…’ tagging in your MySpace profile then?
We don’t have a MySpace any more. We took it down because they changed the whole layout, which made it shit to work with, plus NO ONE uses it any more anyway.
Yeah, I heard that it dropped from something like $580 million to $35 million in just a few years?
I’m not surprised; with sites like Soundcloud and Facebook band pages, it’s simply obsolete; we only really use our band website and the Facebook page to update tour dates and stuff like that. Plus it’s so much easier to interact with fans on Facebook…
So, I was checking out your fan base and it seems to be growing pretty rapidly; any plans for an album to satisfy all these hungry ears?
We hope so. We’re finishing off a few remixes and original tracks and then we’re going to do he big promotional push; there are a few record companies that we’d like to work with, so we’re going to target them first. Our next single is ‘We Got Love’ with a B-side called ‘Come With Us’.
Finally, as you have been playing music for a long time now, you must have had some pretty funny things happen to you on stage?
Oh yes. The classics are accidentally pulling out an audio cable or hitting ‘pause’ so the music cuts out and the whole club just stares at you…not a cool look. What do I do when this happens? Just raise my arms and smile, it’s the only way out. Actually, I saw Xaviar from Justice do just that at Fabric a few years ago; it was 4am and it had been a really intense night, the music was just building to a huge climax and suddenly everything just went dead. I looked over and he had pressed the ‘eject’ button instead of the ‘play’ button; he just smiled at the crowd and raised his hands, totally admitting it…goes to show, it can happen to anyone.
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